Lars Wingefors, CEO of the Embracer Group, has released a statement on the company’s website after the purchase of 8% of his company by Saudi Arabia’s Savvy Gaming Group has been controversial with consumers.
Starting with “I understand and respect that there are different views on this topic. I don’t claim to have the right answers, but I want it to be clear that this decision was not taken lightly.”, Wingefors goes on to explain that “Embracer will continue to be operated by me, our operative CEOs and management teams across the entire Group. Embracer is built on the principles of freedom, inclusion, humanity and openness. The transaction with SGG will not change this in any way.”
“We genuinely believe that SGG, a fully commercial entity, has ambitions within gaming that are genuine in supporting the global ecosystem for our industry that are consistent with and important to the values and culture of our industry,”
Savvy Gaming Group is the property of Saudi Arabia’s Public Investment Fund, which has recently also acquired small percentages of companies like Nintendo, Capcom and Nexon for Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.
Saudi Arabia has reprehensible stances on several human rights issues, for which people have been punished violently, and even executed. The Saudi Arabian fund was also accused of forcibly relocating the Huwaitat tribe for their Neom megacity project, which Riot Games pulled out of in 2020 following backlash.
Embracer Group recently purchased development studios Eidos and Crystal Dynamics and several of their intellectual properties from Square Enix for around $300 million.